Monday, December 31, 2007

"Holocaust denial on the increase in 2007": David Wyman Institute

According to the David Wyman Institute, Holoaust denial increased markedly in 2007. In its report it links this directly to the release of David Irving from jail. I have not yet read the actual report only an article in the Jerusalem Post so I can't comment in any depth.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Ron Paul wins the support of Holocaust denier, Hutton Gibson

[Edited 11:35 a.m.]

Prominently featured on a support Ron Paul site is a ringing endorsement from Hutton Gibson, the avowed Holocaust denier whose son, Mel, has tried to whitewash his father's denial.

Ron Paul cannot control who supports him but he can disavow their support. Why won't he do that? And more importantly, why are all these folks so enamored of him?

[Thanks to David Gorski for bringing this factoid to my attention.]

[Note: It has just been pointed out to me that this is NOT an official Ron Paul site but a site disguised to look like one. We don't know who posted this because the owner of the site is hiding behind Thanks Michael P. Stein for pointing this out.]

Friday, December 28, 2007

Ron Paul and his neo-Nazi supporters

Since my previous post I have been hearing an increasing buzz about Ron Paul. [Maybe I am just listening for it now...]

People -- including a number of people who describe themselves as liberals -- who are looking for an independent candidate seem to be intrigued by him. My observation is, of course, highly UNscientific. But the amount of money Paul has collected on the Internet is not.

This has prompted me to poke around and look at Paul more closely. Given my previous post on Paul, I was expecting to find some shady characters supporting him.

But I must admit to being shocked -- and I don't shock easily -- at the way in which a strange conglomerate of White supremacists, neo-Nazis, 9/11 conspiracists, etc. have embraced him.

Take a look at this site. If you scroll down you will see lots of photos of these folks with Ron Paul including one with Don Black and his son. Don Black, according to Little Green Footballs, is the owner of the neo-Nazi Stormfront site.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Republican Presidential Candidate Ron Paul and the neo-Nazis

The Internet has been buzzing the past few days -- if not more so -- with charges that there are connections between Ron Paul and a hodgepodge of neo-Nazis, White supremacists, Holocaust deniers, 9/11 conspiracy theorists and the like. Some of them have blogged about their supposed meetings.

The charges and counter charges -- which are enough to make your head swim -- first surfaced in mid-November. They have resurfaced again.

One thing, however, seems pretty certain: Paul's adamant refusal to decline their support, denounce their views, or return the funds they have given him.

And this man raised $6m in one day last week on the Internet.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Libel Tourism: N.Y. Court rules in Ehrenfeld case: It won't hear the case.. now.

The N.Y. Appeals Court has ruled in the Ehrenfeld case. There are many disturbing aspects to this case, as my colleague Michael Broyde and I wrote in our New York Times oped.

[Some background: In her book Ehrenfeld charged Saudi billionaire Mahfouz with funding terrorism. She did not publish the book in the UK. Nonetheless, Mahfouz's lawyers bought the book over Amazon UK and then went to the UK court and sued her for libel. The case coined the term "Libel Tourism." She did not contest the Saudi billionaire's charges against her and therefore lost by default. ]

She tried to counter sue Mahfouz in the United States. She argued that, the fact that Mahfouz might try to collect what he won in the UK judgment against her, gave the N.Y. court jurisdiction and it should prevent that from happening.

The N.Y. Appeals Court ruled that New York courts have no jurisdiction to hear her counter suit because he has not yet tried to collect the funds awarded him by the UK court.

Ehrenfeld's lawyers had argued that just the threat that Mahfouz would try to collect the money gave American courts jurisdiction.

What the N.Y. court said was that she can't sue now. The court seems to be saying that, should, however, Mahfouz come banging on her door to collect the money, she can then go to the N.Y. court and ask them to hear the case.

Since the ruling was announced yesterday I have received a number of despondent emails. They have expressed the sentiment that this is an awful defeat for Ehrenfeld, as well as all others who would expose Saudi funding of terrorism and try to expose extremism.

I too wish the ruling had gone otherwise but lawyers had warned me that the court would probably rule this way.

Part of the problem is that Ehrenfeld, by choosing not to contest Mahfouz's assault on her in the UK court, has a judgment against her.

I am convinced -- I may be wrong -- that Mahfouz won't come after Ehrenfeld for the money. To do so he might look like a vicious man trying to strip an American researcher and writer of her livelihood. Moreover, if she then goes to the American courts and counter sues, he might lose.

However, if he leaves things as they are now it is a win/win for him.
* He won by default in the UK court
* He has a judgment against Ehrenfeld [even though she never published in the UK]
* He leaves her hanging, not knowing if he is coming to collect "his" money while he avoids looking like an ogre.
* Above all, he avoids the risk that she will counter sue and win in an American court.

I know that Ehrenfeld did not contest these charges in the UK on principle. [It is absurd that a book that was not published in the UK can be the cause of a libel suit there.] However, because of the nature of UK libel laws, it let Mahfouz have his win [even if by default]

This made him the winner. And that is how he will probably choose to remain.

Fred Töben, Australian Holocaust Denier, tries to post on this blog

I feel no need to post on this blog comments sent to me by deniers. I long ago determined that this blog would not be a place for deniers -- through the subterfuge of supposed comments -- to wage their battles against historical accuracy.

Today I received a comment from Fred Töben, the noted Australian Holocaust denier.

[Töben, on right, with Ahmadinejad at Iran conference. Note David Duke over Ahmadinejad's shoulder]

I am posting it here because it demonstrates how deniers have turned on David Irving, even though for all intents and purposes, he continues to deny.

Deniers seem to be eating their young... and their old.

Toben's comment was prompted by my post "David Irving goes to Spain and to the BBC...":

David Irving has always believed in limited gassings and hence he is a Holocaust believer. I refuse to believe, without physical proof, in the systematic extermination of six million European Jews in homicidal gas chambers.

The Holocaust believers have never proven their case but instead use legal means to silence those who refuse to believe in the Jewish Holocaust Shoah.

Fredrick Töben
Adelaide Institute

Thursday, December 20, 2007

David Irving goes to Spain and to the BBC...

This week's Jewish Chronicle reports that Irving went to Spain and gave a denial speech.

There is nothing noteworthy about this article except that he was supposed to appear on a BBC World programme. What are the people at the BBC thinking or NOT thinking??? [See the section highlighted below.]

Spanish police study Irving speech
*By Bernard Josephs and Dana Gloger*
Spanish police were this week examining a recording of a speech by revisionist historian David Irving, condemned by a British High Court judge as a Holocaust denier, after the Jewish community failed to have him banned from speaking in Barcelona.

Under Spanish law, justifying genocide or inciting racism and xenophobia can carry a sentence of up to three years. Police were authorised by a judge to examine Irving’s words to see if he had broken the law in his speech at a bookshop last Saturday.

According to agency reports, he told his audience of about 20 that there was no proof that Hitler was aware of the Holocaust. But, he said, there was no doubt that the Nazis killed “two or three million” Jews.

During his speech, about 100 people protested outside the bookshop which was guarded by police.

Dahliah Levinsohn, secretary of the Federation of Jewish communities in Spain, said: “The Federation asked the High Court to cancel Irving’s talk, as we thought there could be acts of incitement to racism and antisemitism.

“Although it [the court] did not cancel the conference, Catalan police were present and the court issued them with an official order to enter and record the talk.

“He [Irving] was very careful not to negate the Holocaust, precisely because the Catalan police were there. Now the police will analyse the talk and see if something comes up.” In 2006 Irving was sentenced by an Austrian court to three years in prison for Holocaust denial but was released after serving one-third of his sentence.

He was due this week is to take part in a BBC World Service programme.
He was to be among “eight gagged individuals — people banned from speaking because of their beliefs or work”, said a BBC spokesperson.

Irving has threatened to sue the /JC/ if it calls him an “active Holocaust denier”.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Benjamin Franklin on the Jews: Classic [and highly mythical] antisemitism from a Syrian cleric:

[Links corrected 12/18/07]
According to MEMRI, Syrian Cleric Muhammad Sa'id Ramadhan Al-Bouti said on Al Jazeera that Benjamin Franklin had called upon Americans to Deport Jews from the U.S.

Simply put: this is completely false. No proof of this statement has been found in anything Franklin said. In addition, it contains language that was not used in Franklin's times, e.g. homeland. Moreover, the statement never surfaced before the 1930s. And it comes from a book which no one has ever seen.

If you need more evidence that this a hoax and an antisemitic canard, the ADL has done a good analysis of the history of this fraudulent claim. Significantly, this ADL piece quotes a number of leading Franklin scholars who debunk this nasty effort

Now we have to ask how this cleric got this information? It only surfaces on antisemitic and White Supremacist websites. I guess we know where he and his cohort are rummaging.

His use of this really gives one hope.....

Testimony from a Sonderkommando who worked in gas chambers in Auschwitz

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Using History on Trial to connect Holocaust denial and 9/11 conspiracy theorists

A website devoted to debunking 9/11 conspiracies addresses the connections between such conspiracy theorists and my own work on Holocaust deniers, particularly as addressed in my book, History on Trial.

History on Trial: Reflections on my book from Germany

There are some interesting comments on my work, the trial, and on History on Trial at

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

An unrepentant Nazi freely cavorts in Spain and elsewhere: Why is no one charging him?

Instead of spending time on Holocaust deniers, here is someone who European governments should pursue with vigor.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Irving v. Lipstadt: The Saga Continues

This week's Jewish Chronicle contains a story about David Irving's claims that he is planning to serve me with legal papers when I was in London last week.

On his website he has suggested in the past that I sneak into London to avoid him. Given that my speeches have been well publicized -- enough for 900 people to attend -- this is clearly an imaginary claim. No surprise here.

David Irving v Deborah Lipstadt, Part 2
By By Dana Gloger
HOLOCAUST-denier David Irving claims he is preparing to serve court papers on the American historian he unsuccessfully sued for libel in London’s High Court eight years ago.

This week, the JC learned that the discredited historian, who last year served part of a three-year sentence in an Austrian jail for breaching the country’s Holocaust-denial laws, emailed Deborah Lipstadt informing her he intended to institute unspecified court proceedings against her.

He told the JC that this could only be done while she was within the jurisdiction of the High Court.

When Irving found out that Prof Lipstadt would be in the UK for a series of talks, he got in touch with her.

In an email dated November 30, which the JC has seen, Irving, 69, wrote: “Please inform me whether you will be available for service of court proceedings, and make a suitable appointment for this purpose; please also confirm that you will take no steps to prevent court officers from approaching you, and cause no steps to be taken to prevent court officers from approaching you on this occasion.”

In his 2000 libel case, Irving was branded an antisemite by a judge after bringing the suit against Prof Lipstadt for calling him a Holocaust denier.

He would not divulge why he was planning to bring his latest threatened action, but confirmed that they were not related to libel.

“There is something in the air, but I can’t tell you any more. For now it goes back on the shelf, until she is back in the jurisdiction of the British High Court and I can locate her.”

There were rumours on Tuesday night that Irving would try to gatecrash Prof Lipstadt’s talk at Finchley Synagogue. But he said he had not tried to go, as he knew he would not be allowed in.

He added: “[Ms Lipstadt] is no friend of mine. I have many Jewish friends but she is not one of them.”

Although Irving said that Prof Lipstadt had not responded to his email, when the JC spoke to her, she said her solicitors, Mishcon de Reya, had replied on her behalf.

It is understood that an email was sent confirming that anything served would be accepted. Ms Lipstadt said: “His email came as a little bit of a surprise, but he pulls these kinds of things.”

In October, Irving threatened to sue the JC for calling him an active Holocaust denier. He has not carried out this threat.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Apples over the Fence: A Holocaust story that beggars the imagination

There is a Holocaust story making the rounds on the Internet which is clearly not true. It's about an inmate of a camp [a sub-camp of Buchenwald] who connects with a young girl outside the camp. She throws him an apple everyday over the fence. He tells her one day in May 1945 that she should not throw any more apples because at 10 a.m. the next morning he has appointment to appear at the gas chamber to be killed. This story has so many shortcomings that one hardly knows where to begin.

Let me focus only on the most fundamental one: Buchenwald had no gas chambers. In May 1945 no one was still being gassed. Moreover, Jews were not told ahead of time that they were going to be gassed. The whole idea behind the gassing was surprise and deception.

[There is another version on the Internet that places the camp at Terezin/ Theresienstadt and the author says that they were told to report to a section of the camp the next morning at 10 a.m. and they knew this meant they were to be gassed. But there were no gas chambers in Terezin.]

If you get this email do NOT send it on to other people. Delete it.

Not only do we need to be historically accurate for the simple sake of history. But on top of that, this kind of stuff is fodder for deniers.

There are many amazing stories about the Holocaust. Just the fact that some people managed to survive this hell is amazing in and of itself. We don't need embellished and/or false stories. The truth is far more than enough.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

What happens when rumors are really just lies?

The Washington Post's cartoonist Tom Toles has poked some barbed comments at his paper's treatment of some false rumors, i.e. lies, being spread about Obama.

Toles' cartoon was prompted by how the Post handled a story concerning the false reports afloat that Obama is secretly a Muslim who will take the oath of office on a Koran. Whatever you think of the inexperienced Senator from Illinois, this is completely untrue.

The Washington Post, in writing about it, presented "both sides of the issue" and discussed the rumors [aka lies] without explicitly stating that the story is just false. The Post's Lois Romano's defended the way in which the paper presented the story. Since this discussion has become so heated, Romano said, the Post's
editors decided it was in the readers interest to address it. I have heard people say that they won't support Sen. Obama because they read he doesn't put is hand over his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance. He has denied this -- so airing some of this and giving him a chance to deny its accuracy could be viewed as setting the record straight.
This is, as Salon's Glenn Greenwald observes, patently absurd. The Post should have called these rumors what they are: lies. To compound matters the Post gave the story the following headline:
Foes Use Obama's Muslim Ties to Fuel Rumors About Him
What the Post should have done, Greenwald notes, is what the New York Times did yesterday in a story on how Giuliani uses statistics about his supposedly stellar mayoral record.
All of these statements are incomplete, exaggerated or just plain wrong . . . .An examination of many of his statements by The New York Times, other news organizations and independent groups have turned up a variety of misstatements, virtually all of which cast Mr. Giuliani or his arguments in a better light.
Why am I blogging about this? Because of the decided parallel to how the media often handles claims by Holocaust deniers. Mercifully, this has been less the case with David Irving's contentions since he lost his attempt to sue me for libel. His claims about the Holocaust were exposed as lies and fabrications.

I wonder however if we will soon see the Washington Post presenting "both sides" of the Holocaust denial argument.

Presenting two sides is a good thing when there are two sides. But one "side" is a complete lie it should unequivocally be treated as such.

The Washington Post failed that test.

Teaching [or Not] the Holocaust in the UK

Esther Solomon, an editor at Ha'aretz, has written about an issue which I have been blogging about for months, the false rumor that the UK [or the University of Kentucky depending on the version of the email you received] has dropped teaching of the Holocaust.